Auras tend to be at their best when they're
removal and not self-augments, because they just
make the wearer that much more attractive a
target for kill spells. But an Aura that grants
a power/toughness boost, some form of evasion,
AND an extra ability that "pays you back" when
it hits, like this does, is worth the risk of
card disadvantage-- you can play it on your
two-drop and immediately swing for an extra one
damage and a shot of life gain. In a White
Weenie aggro deck, it'd be a good option to keep
your early drops relevant in the late-game, or
possibly even just to sideboard in against other
aggro decks so the extra life gain helps you win
the race. Black tends to lean more towards
control, so unless some sort of monoblack aggro
deck emerges, I don't see this catching on.
Ironically, White is better suited to take
advantage of this, but the creature it would
most want to put this on can't wear it, because
it has Protection from Black.
This is just my kind of card. I like Auras
(even before they started getting "tribal"
support in Rise of the Eldrazi), I like flying
and other evasive abilities, and I like the
Orzhov. You've probably noticed that it takes
away the standard way of dealing with Geist of
Saint Traft and similar cards, and that it's not
only repeatable life gain but one that advances
your plan too - making it so much harder for
aggressive decks to come back from.
This card's very existence gives me hope that
Armadillo Cloak will return to an expert-level
set one day. Start writing those letters,
Today's card of the day is Gift of Orzhova
which is a three mana Black or White aura that
adds +1/+1, Lifelink, and Flying. This is
a little expensive for an aura in competitive
formats and provides no protection against a two
for one loss, but giving evasion, Lifelink, and
a power/toughness boost is decent for the price.
On a creature with Hexproof or Vigilance it is a
notable threat and may see some play in
Black/White on the Casual scene at least.
For Limited this isn't unreasonable to splash
into Boros or Dimir, but excels in Orzhov both
for the easier mana management and the Lifelink
fitting in nicely with the Extort mechanic.
The risk of a two for one is lessened in the
format and the power of evasion or Lifelink is
well established. For an Orzhov build this
is an automatic inclusion that can turn anything
beyond a 1/1 into a noticeable problem, while in
Booster it is a strong on color pick around
third or fourth in a pack and can easily make a
difference in any stage of the game.
Side Note: Just wanted to mention a
The name is Shift and it has some aspects
similar to Yu-Gi-Oh! with the offense and
defense ratings while even going so far as to
have a Duel Dial accessory. You can check
it out at
and see if you like the idea. It is
basically a trading card game that instead of a
deck has just one card per player that can turn
to alter the abilities it has. Kind of
like Transform in magic, evolving in Pokémon, or
defense mode in Yu-Gi-Oh!